To all God’s beloved of Church of the Epiphany, who are called to be saints:
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
On Thursday, March 26, 2020, the Arizona Department of Health Services upgraded the community spread of COVID-19 from “Moderate” to “Widespread.” With the upgraded status, it seems more than prudent for Church of the Epiphany’s campus to be closed.
In real terms, this means that the staff of our parish will begin working from home on Friday, March 27, 2020. We will continue to keep our regular office hours, but we will do so from home.
Just as we are asking our staff to work from home, I am asking all parishioners to respect that the campus buildings are closed.
How do I contact parish staff?
With our parish staff going to a work from home status, you can continue to reach us by calling our main number – 480-968-4111. You will be directed to the auto attendant. Please listen to the menu and dial the appropriate input to reach the intended staff member. If we are not able to take your phone call, you will be able to leave a voicemail just you normally would.
While we are closing our parish buildings Monday-Saturday, we will continue to host a live stream worship experience. While we can do that from the church, we will do so, but it is quite likely that we will need to shift towards a different way of hosting worship online.
No matter the form it takes, we will host a live stream worship experience on our YouTube channel. We are moving from Facebook to YouTube for our Sunday worship to make it easier for people to access and to create a better at home worship experience.
The Spiritual Practice of Giving
Many of us are accustomed to giving financially by putting a check or cash in the plate as part of our worship. While we may not be able to pass the plate physically, we can still participate in the spiritual practice of sharing our financial treasure.
Giving by Check
You may, of course, mail a check to the parish office at 2222 S. Price Rd., Tempe, AZ 85281. You may also give by check online on our website. To give by check, go to https://www.epiphanytempe.org/giving and select “ACH Bank Transfer” in the first drop-down menu. Complete the remaining fields with your banking information. Please do not bring checks to the office in person.
Giving by Credit Card
You can give using a credit card by visiting our website and putting in your card information. Please remember that the whole of our website is behind SSL encryption to protect everyone’s data.
Giving by Text Message
You may also continue your spiritual practice of giving by using our text to give functionality. To get started, simply text the amount you would like to give to (480) 725-3974. You will receive a text in response asking you to complete your banking information (either credit card or ACH Bank Transfer).
In Mark 6, Jesus is teaching a large crowd, and when it grew late, his disciples urged Jesus to send the people away to find something to eat. In response, Jesus tells his disciples, “You give them something to eat.”
The care for the community is an important part of walking in the way of Christ. Just as Jesus empowered his disciples to feed a large crowd, so too are we empowered to do what we can to care for our community. Some of the ways that we are able to care for each other are to stay at home, to practice good hygiene, and to practice holy spacing – a term coined by The Rev. Dr. Eric Law for the practice of social distancing. We, like the disciples, have it in ourselves to feed our community and to protect those whom we love.
May God bless you and keep you as we continue to shift how we are church even when we might feel that “there is no firm ground for my feet.” (Ps. 69:2b – Book of Common Prayer)